As much as everyone would like this article to be about HBO’s hit series ‘Game of Thrones,’ we’re going to dive into a preview of Canada’s Olympic squads, which in the end, means more to people in this country – at least I think so.
Canada will look to reclaim the same magic they had during the 2010 Winter games in Vancouver, as for many gold-medal winning athletes, anything short of the top-podium finish will be considered a failure. Seriously though, no pressure.
Canada won the most gold-medals in the last Winter Olympics, 14 to be exact, while also capturing 7 silver and 5 bronze for a collective 26 medals – sitting third behind USA with 37 and Germany with 30. This time around, Canadian athletes will not have the benefit of home-field advantage, as the gold medal winners will look to repeat in Sochi, Russia.
Christine Nesbitt (Speed skating), Alex Bilodeau (Freestyle Skiing), and Kaillie Humphries (Bodsled) are just some of the athletes that will be headlining Canada’s bid at claiming top spot in the medal rankings.
Expectations for the Canadian speed skating team appear to be more modest this time around, however the freestyle ski team will be looking to make noise. Bilodeau has won his last three World Cup events, and his closest rival is fellow teammate Mikael Kingsbury – who is the reigning World Champion.
On the Women’s side of freestyle, Dara Howell won silver at the World Championships and took home gold at the 2013 X-Games in slopestyle. Her teammate, Kaya Turski, is a 3-time winner of slopestyle at the X-Games, and was World Champion of the event in 2013.
The bobsled team will also look to dazzle, as the Women’s pair of Humphries and Heather Moyse took home the fastest time and gold at the most recent World Cup in Switzerland. The Men’s pairing of former Ti-Cat running back Jesse Lumsden and his partner Lyndon Rush also look to reach the podium, as they took home a silver at the World Championships in 2012, as well as winning the 2013 World Cup title.
Other events to look out for in February are snowboard cross, the biathlon, curling and figure skating; not to mention both Men’s and Women’s hockey, which seems to get all the birds chirping when brought into the limelight.
WE KNOW you disagree with someone left off the team, but lets not count any chips before the hand is dealt. The only person who we will really miss, due to his absence, is Jon Montgomery, who will always be remembered for strutting around the Olympic village in 2010, chugging back golden suds.
This February will be about more than just hockey. We are a nation who are proud of our winter dominance. We love the snow, and that when 5 cm hits the ground, it doesn’t send us into evacuation mode. We will be proud of any result in Sochi, and we look forward to cheering on even the most obscure and dangerous events when we see our Canadian flag donned in the red and white.
Let’s get ‘em Canada, and show why this is our element. GO CANADA GO!
Photo Credit: collider.com; powdermag.com; jordanstrength.com; cwsn.ca